The Instigator
linate
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
syara20
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

government should implement a 'fat tax'

Do you like this debate?NoYes+1
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
syara20
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/5/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 960 times Debate No: 60023
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (1)

 

linate

Pro

government should implement a 'fat tax'

the idea, that heart disease and other bad health effects from being fat causes an increase in health care costs, in a country that is heavily subsidized by the government. so, whatever it costs should be made up for in fat taxes.

my understanding is right now the costs of being fat to the government are not sufficiently made up for in sales taxes. if it were, it would be more prohibitive for over eaters, so they would't eat and be lazy as much, and it'd be ensure the government is getting reimbursed for what it spends.

could make an exception for medically known reasons for being over weight.

i might agree with making the tax contingent on taking any government benefits, i'm not sure. probably along the idea of the 'obama care penalty' logic, i'd tax all who are fat, cause everyone needs health care at some point, especially notably those who are fat.
syara20

Con

What counts as "fat"
There are different levels of being overweight. There is overweight, and obesity. According to the CDC, if you have a BMI above 24.9 means that you are overweight. Having a BMI of above 30.0 means that you are obese. If you could please clarify which or both you are suggesting this fat tax against, I would appreciate it greatly.
Secondly, I would like to ask, are you suggesting we tax the elderly who are obese? Because, due to various problems (balance difficulties, joint problems, etc.) it may become difficult for elders to exercise. Especially elders who are not incredibly wealthy. Would these count as medically known reasons for being overweight? Especially since some elders with some joint difficulties may find it more easy to exercise, while others may not.
Thirdly, with this "Obama care penalty" logic. Are you thinking that anybody who is fat and is using health care that is necessary because of their fatness? Or do you think that anybody who is fat gets this tax no matter if they are using government healthcare or not. It would be helpful to clarify.
I got my information on BMI from http://www.cdc.gov...
Thank you, and I look forward to your rebuttal.
Debate Round No. 1
linate

Pro

the exact tax details is not important. it's just that we have taxes. the taxes can be on the fatty foods, or increase on the person as they get fatter. what's important is whtether we have a fat tax at all to begin with.

elderly people can eat less and may be able to do aquatic or less intensive exercise. but even if we execmpted them, it doesn't negate tht we shouldn't have a fat tax to being with.

i prefer to tax them regardless of whether they take insurance from government. ause they will likey end up on government rolls in the end. i mean, if we said you can't do that in the end, i might be open to not taxing them. but as a practical matter our government wil help them when they are having problems related to being fat. so i tend to say tax the food, and tax the weight.
syara20

Con

The first problem I foresee with what you are saying is that there is not yet a clarity in what you are proposing. One idea, the tax on fatty foods, is not one that I disagree with. I believe that a tax on extremely unhealthy foods would be beneficial for people, because the food's price tag would discourage people from purchasing the food.
However, a tax on people because of their weight is something I disagree with. A tax on people because of their weight, would be fundamentally wrong. Just because they are overweight, or "fat" does not mean that they are lesser people than those who are a normal or healthy weight. By giving these people an extra tax, you are making them pay more simply because of the way they were raised, because of their metabolism, or because they simply do not have the time or desire to change their weight.
A tax against fat people would be like imposing a tax upon people who smoke. There is nothing wrong with taxing the good that causes them harm but taxing the person who uses that product is wrong. In the case of your "fat tax" one suggestion is taxing fatty foods, and one is taxing people who are overweight. One idea is a good one, it would increase the amount of money needed to buy unhealthy food. Your other idea is bad, in that it goes against the idea that the law does not judge people based on their appearance, habits, ethnicity, religion, or health because everybody is equal.
Debate Round No. 2
linate

Pro

con concedes do taxing fatty foods. doctors could give special exceptions fo people who have thyroid or metabolism problems, though, per taxing them direct. there's really not much different taxing the food or taxing hte person.... both are causes of bad health care. in fact, healthy people might want fatty foods, and why shuld they have to pay mroe when it's the being fat that we see as the problem? i say, get to the source. focus on that, but stay open to all tax on fatty foods too
syara20

Con

I do believe that taxing fatty foods is a good idea. However I don't believe that there should be any exception to the tax, just like there is not for cigarettes. The problem with these exceptions to the tax is that once again, it seems Pro is only concerned about the physical appearance of the person, not their healthiness. I do not agree with a fatty food tax if some people will be exempt from the tax. The problem with taxing just "fat" people (as you still have not clarified your definition of fat) for fatty food is that once again you are charging somebody more money because of their appearance, habits, ethnicity, religion, or health and that is not how it works in the United States, because everyone is equal. The reason why it would be fine to tax all fatty foods (to all people) is because it is unhealthy for everybody. Fatty foods are not unhealthy for just "fat" people, they're also unhealthy for skinny people. Fatty foods are unhealthy for everyone, so this fatty food tax should be applied to everyone.
In Pro's last argument, they stated "there's really not much different taxing the food or taxing hte person.... both are causes of bad health care." There is a lot different about taxing food and taxing a person. If you were to tax a person because they smoked, there would be an uproar. You can not tax a person just because of something they do, how they look, how healthy they are, or their background. Our government just does not function that way. Now, to the second part of that statement. "Both are causes of bad health care." Now this is a statement that confuses me. The idea that "fat" people are a cause of bad health care seems a bit preposterous. If people are having bad healthcare, that would be because of doctors who are stretched too thinly, or because of our nation's overly expensive healthcare. "Fat" people are not causing bad healthcare in the US so that part of the statement is irrelevant.
Now Pro also stated that we should "get to the source" but "stay open to all tax fatty foods". I'm assuming that by "getting to the source" Pro means taxing "fat" people. However, a tax on fatty foods (for everyone. No exceptions) would be getting more to the source than this proposed tax on "fat" people.
I don't know if I can make this any clearer, but a tax on people who are "fat" would be similar to putting a tax on smokers. It goes against the idea that in the US all people are equal, despite appearance, ethnicity, health, age, gender, etc. By imposing an extra tax on fat people would go against the principal that all men are created equal. A better alternative to improve the health of all people, fat or thin would be the idea of a tax on unhealthy, fatty foods. This would improve the health of all people.
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by gymnastseal 2 years ago
gymnastseal
I see the validity of the "fat tax" (though a new name might be better), and I do think it would be helpful to redefine "fat". Would "fat" be borderline overweight? Or would you allow a little leeway? In addition it might be helpful to assess why people become obese. While some may simply enjoy fine food on a grand scale, it is also possible that the cheaper foods are generally unhealthy. If a tax were to be placed on more expensive foods, that might eliminate many people's only source of food. The issue of obesity in present day culture is deeper than what it initially on the surface. It is easy to say that to eliminate obesity we have to get rid of the fattening foods, but nothing is really that simple. Beneath the surface you start to see correlations between the poverty line and increase in obesity. Its great that people actually care about solving this issues, and it is admirable that you are trying to solve this problem, but if it were that easy, don't you think somebody would have come up with that already? No offense, but a "fat tax" isn't exactly a radical idea. Whatever people might say, the government isn't stupid and don't you think they would have put in a tax ("Hey. More money") if they actually thought it might work?

Just my humble opinion
XOXOXO
Posted by AsianGenius 2 years ago
AsianGenius
is your primary purpose for taxes to raise money or discourage purchasing of fats?
Posted by AsianGenius 2 years ago
AsianGenius
I agree
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by bladerunner060 2 years ago
bladerunner060
linatesyara20Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Almost a troll debate, but both sides seemed to take it seriously. Pro had BoP here, and a failure to source data is what, in my opinion, caused his case to fail. Without justifying the specifics of what fat's costs are, Pro has failed to justify a tax on the fat. Con noted that it's the health issues that are of concern, not necessarily the relative fatty-ness, and asked Pro to clarify his position, which Pro claimed was unnecessary. Without that clarification, though, and without any kind of hard data, it's hard to see how Pro made his case. Arguments to Con. As always, happy to clarify this RFD.